In the ‘small world’ category, a lawyer sat next to mibarra and behind me on the train to the GNOME Summit today. He asked why there were 15 people in front of him, all apparently madly hacking. Mibarra explained a bit about who we were, and eventually he mentioned that he was aware of the problems of compatibility with Microsoft, since his firm had just been forced to switch from wordperfect to Word. Oh, and then he casually mentioned that he’d cross examined ‘that jerk Johannsen’ for the DVDCSS case. On the side of the Industry, of course. Weird. On challenge, did seem to firmly believe that I had the right to watch DVDs I’d owned on any platform that the industry chose (had to try hard not to roll my eyes at him) and seemed surprised when I told him that, no, in fact, we don’t all have zillions of ripped movies on our hard drives.
The summit should be very good. I look forward to beating some people over the head in person, and drinking with them later. ;)
FWIW, I think people are over-interpreting the Joy quote; it seemed to me on reading it that his thrust was ‘open sourcing the code later does not impact the initial innovative moment.’ i.e., open source is not magic innovative pixie dust, it still takes some mixture of inspiration and perspiration to make good ideas happen whether they are open or closed.